Scandata faq q12
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4-Level FSK Data Decoder Interface Frequently Asked Questions File
By Bill Cheek
Before we proceed, it should be stressed that this FAQ is very old, and most if not all of the URLs and other contact information is gone. There are very few applications that would require a 4 level interface anymore that can't be handeled with another application. Project 25 decoding is now easily available and accessible (See our trunktrackers and decoders article). MDT decoding, though illegal, is almost impossible now with such data being encrypted anyway. This file is therefore presented as a legacy article and for information only.
Contents ========= 01: What do I have to do to get into 4-Level FSK decoding? 02: How do I go about getting into 4LFSK on my own? 03: What help is available for getting into 4LFSK decoding? Questions and Answers ========================================================== 01: What do I have to do to get into 4-Level FSK decoding? The very first step is to install and test the NFM Discriminator tap or "Baseband Audio" Mod in your scanner using a 2-Level FSK Data Decoder Interface. This is a two-part process, fairly elementary, that is fully described in another of my FAQs called SCANDATA.FAQ, freely available at: http://ourworld.compuserve.com/homepages/bcheek/scandata.txt So to answer your question specifically: A. Install a "baseband audio tap" in your scanner, and B. Build the simple 2-Level FSK Data Decoder Interface C. Test it with a freeware program called TRUNKER, now in version 3.7 or so. After you've completed those first three steps, then: D. Decide whether you want to have a go at the 4LFSKDDI completely on your own, or if you need varying degrees of outside assistance. =============================================================== 02: How do I go about getting into 4LFSK on my own? Cool! That's the spirit! Except this FAQ ain't the place. There's not a lot to decoding 4LFSK signals, but you do have to have the right hardware and software. The software is a "no-brainer" for the most part, but you do have to build the 4LFSK Data Decoder Interface. This puppy is just a little too "hairy" to put into a simple ASCII drawing like I did for the 2LFSKDDI in my SCANDATA.FAQ file. So, you have to launch the adventure on your own, but I can help you get started. Fire up your Web browser and check out the following sites: http://www.geocities.com/SiliconValley/Horizon/6063/ http://www.qsl.net/pa3eik/4lev_fsk.htm http://www.geocities.com/CapeCanaveral/Launchpad/4039/ http://www.geocities.com/ResearchTriangle/Lab/9339/ http://www.geocities.com/SiliconValley/Network/8916/4levelm.gif Each of the above sites supports 4LFSK to some extent, be it hardware, software, or both. If you are going to go it alone, on your own, then exit here and start researching those support sites. ============================================================== 03: What help is available for getting into 4LFSK decoding? First, no matter what, you should investigate the Web sites given in Q&A #2 above. The information at those sites is helpful to some extent. If you are technically inclined, those sites may be all you need or want in terms of help. If you are not technically inclined, or if those Web sites are so much "Greek" to you, leaving you with a feeling of helplessness. Relax.............. If you aren't comfortable taking on a 4-8 hour technical project on your own, or if you're a working stiff with spare time about as plentiful as gold, then maybe I can help to some extent. In fact, I can help in several ways, each designed for a specialized budget of time and resources. A. I developed a detailed high-resolution laser printed Instruction Set that has 8-pages of text, tables, charts, drawings, references, parts lists and photos to guide the casual (or busy) hobbyist to success at decoding 4LFSK signals. If all you need is an A-to-Z guide that dispenses with technical jargon and just efficiently guides you from nowhere to success, then this Instruction Set might be all you need. The price is right. 4LFSKDDI Instruction Set; you provide all materials and parts, and build the hardware and set up the freely downloadable software per my guidance. Price: $5, ppd USA. $7, ppd, foreign ====================================== B. I can also provide a Kit of essential parts along with the Instruction Set in (3-A) above. The Kit Parts List is given below along with other lists of probably needed or wanted materials that are not provided in the basic Kit. 4LFSKDDI Instruction Set plus Kit of essential parts; you provide other optional materials and parts; build the hardware and set up the freely downloadable software per my guidance. Price: $20 + $8 S&H USA. $20 + $15 S&H, foreign Parts List (Stuff Provided in Kit) Qty Description === ====================== 1 Instruction Set (See 03-A above) 1 LM324 Quad Op-amp 1 LM339 Quad Comparator 3 capacitor; 2.2-uf/25v; tantalum 1 capacitor; 0.01-uF/50v; monolithic 2 capacitor; 0.1uF/50v; monolithic 2 diode; 1N914/1N4148 1 resistor; 1-M 1 resistor; 2.2k 2 resistor; 15k 2 resistor; 100 2 resistor; 22k 2 resistor; 47k 3 resistor; 2.7k 1 RCA Jack 1 DB9 Jack (female) 1 Perfboard; 18 holes x 15 holes 2 Trimmer pot; 10k; mini or, at our option, two 4.7k fixed resistors Parts List (Probably needed or wanted; not supplied) Qty Description === ====================== 1 Enclosure (Project box) 3ft Shielded audio cable (RCA plug on one end with plug on other end to match the baseband audio jack on the scanner.) 6ft Shielded serial cable (DB9 female on one end to mate to 4LFSKDDI output and a DB9 male or DB25 male on the other end to mate to the selected COMport on the PC. 2 IC socket; 14 pin DIP ? Small quan of 22-ga uninsulated solid copper wire ? Small quan of 22-ga stranded, insulated, color-coded hookup wires. ? Small supply of "break apart" pinline sockets: Digi-Key: p/n A208-ND (800) 344-4539 Hosfelt: p/n 21-274 (800) 524-6464 Mouser: p/n 151-5520/5530 (800) 346-6873 ? LEDs, switches, etc. 1 Dual polarity power supply, +/-12.6 volts max Can be as low as +/-5v, but 9 to 12v ideal. Can be as simple as two 9v batteries or two 9v wall-warts wired as follows: o----------> +9v on 4LFSKDDI Board + | ----- --- 9v battery or ----- DC adapter --- ----- --- _ | o----------> Ground on 4LFSKDDI Board + | ----- --- 9v battery or ----- DC adapter --- ----- --- _ | o----------> -9v on 4LFSKDDI Board OTHER NECESSITIES (Not provided) Qty Description === ====================== 1 PC (Pentium 133+) (486 computers, maybe) 1 Scanner with 800-960 MHz (cellular not required); (must have NFM baseband audio mod) ? Soldering equipment and basic electronic tools ================ C. I am working on ways to provide Assembled and Tested 4LFSKDDI boards, including enclosures, power supplies and basically everything in a package. For now, all I can supply are prototype Assembled and Tested 4LFSKDDI boards with RCA and DB9 jacks attached....essentially ready for you to install in an enclosure of choice and connect the +/- power supply of choice. Price: $100 + $8 S&H USA. $100 + $ ? S&H, foreign NOTE: This price includes only the Assembled/Tested 4LFSKDDI board and jacks, as described above, as well as the Instruction Set. Power supply and enclosure not included. ================ D. Assembled/Tested 4LFSKDDI built into a suitable enclosure, with Instruction Set. You provide the external +/- power supply. Price: TBA (Not available yet) (or inquire for custom pricing) E. Assembled/Tested 4LFSKDDI built into a suitable enclosure, with Instruction Set and power supply Price: TBA (Not available yet) (or inquire for custom pricing) OTHER INFORMATION ================= TO ORDER: Use e-mail, fax, or postal mail per the information in my signature box below. MC/VISA or M.O. preferred. ($10 minimum credit card order) Personal and company checks okay, but shipment delayed until bank clearance. No COD's and no shipments to PO Boxes or mail drops. Alaska, Hawaii and foreign shipping extra. (Bill's old address is on the first page of the FAQ. No need to repeat it here, and he's dead anyway.....) TERMS: All sales are final; no returns-no refunds. No warranty on Kits.
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